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Monday, September 27, 2010

Combo Menu : Balti Dhal with spring onions and tomato AND Balti potato with Aubergine/Eggplant

Friends, after more than 7 days, I'm back with an amazing combo menu. Remember, I mentioned about an Indian cooking book(by Mridula Baljekar & Manisha Kanani), now I'm obsessed with, which has wide range of mouth watering recipes and I'm trying them one-by-one. So, Today's combo meal menu I want to share is Balti Dhal and Balti Potatoes with Aubergine. I've heard about Balti cuisine before, like balti chichen etc., but had no idea what a Balti cuisine is?

So, What is Balti cuisine?
A Balti is a British-style type of curry cooked and served up in a type of flat-bottomed wok made of cast iron. It is served in many restaurants in the United Kingdom. The style of food is thought to originate from the Pakistani region of Baltistan in Kashmir, from where it was brought by South Asian immigrants to Britain. Birmingham, Britain is now known as the Capital of the Balti.
Whilst the traditional Curry has distinctive tastes and varying degrees of hotness, the Balti serves a flavour and zest that accommodates most appetites.  Balti is traditionally served sizzling with a large naan bread which is used to scoop up this tasty dish. Balti involves the fast cooking of marinated meat and spices over a high flame. Vegetables, such as spinach, potato, mushroom or aubergine (eggplant) may be added to chicken, beef, fish or prawns. Vegetarian versions of Balti are also prepared. The cooking and serving method ensures that the flavors of all the spices are retained.

Combo menu : Balti dhal & Balti potatoes with aubergine served with freshly made chapathi

Now, to the first recipe of  Balti Dhal with Spring Onions & Tomatoes
Ingredients :
Toor Dal/ yellow split peas : 1/2 Cup
Spring Onion : a medium bunch(roughly chopped)
Cherry Tomatoes : 6-8
Green Bell Pepper : 1/2 (seeded & Sliced)
Fresh Ginger : 11/2 tsp. ( grated)
Garlic : 1 tsp.(grated/crushed)
Fresh fenugreek leaves : 2 tbsp.(chopped)
Fresh Coriander leaves : 2 tbsp.(chopped)
Onion seeds/kalonji/Kala Jeera : 1/2 tsp.
Turmeric Powder : 1 tsp.
Red Chilli powder : 1-2 tsp.
Lemon juice : 1 tblsp.
Salt to taste
Oil : 2 tblsp.
Fresh coriander leaves and some shredded spring onion tops, to garnish

Method :
  • Wash and soak the dal/dhal in water for at least 1/2-1 hour. Then Cook in boiling water for 45 minutes or until soft and mushy. Alternatively, can cook in pressure cooker. Drain and set aside.
  • Heat the oil in a pan/karahi. Temper with onion seeds, wit for few seconds, when it start to crackle, add the dhal and stir fry with the onion seed for about 3 minutes.
  • Then add the chopped spring onions, sliced bell pepper, followed by ginger, garlic, turmeric & chilli powder, fenugreek leaves, salt and continue to stir-fry for another 5-6 minutes.
  • Pour in just enough water to loosen the mixture. Then add the whole cherry tomatoes, coriander leaves and lemon juice. Cook for another 1 minute. Stir well and serve garnished with shredded spring onion tops and some extra coriander leaves.

Now, to the recipe of  Balti potatoes with Aubergine
Using baby potatoes adds to the attractiveness of this dish, also choose baby aubergine/brinjals/eggplant for this dish. It's a very flavourful dish....
Ingredients :
baby potatoes : 10-12
Small eggplant : 6
Red bell pepper : 1(medium)
Onion(medium) : 2(sliced)
Fresh Ginger : 1 tsp.(grated)
Garlic : 1 tsp.(crushed/grated)

Fresh fenugreek leaves(chopped) : 1 tblsp.(if not available, use dry kasoori methi)
Fresh Coriander leaves(chopped) : 1 tblsp.

Onion seeds/kalonji/kala jeera : 1/2 tsp.
Curry leaves : 4-6 
Coriander seeds : 1 tsp.(roughly crushed)
Cumin seeds : 1/2 tsp.
Dry red chilli : 1 tsp.(crushed)
Salt to taste
Oil : 2 tblsp.Natural low-fat yoghurt(dahi) : 1 tblsp.
Fresh coriander leaves for garnishing

Method :
  • Cook/ boil the potatoes until tender, not overcooked. When cool, cut into half. Cut the aubergines into medium thin slices lengthwise. Same with the red bell pepper, cut into thin slices.
  • Heat oil in a karahi/wok, temper with onion seeds, when they start to crackle, add curry leaves, followed by sliced onions. Stir fry onions with crushed coriander seeds and cumin seeds until onions turn soft golden brown, stirring constantly.
  • Then add ginger, garlic, crushed chillies and fenugreek leaves, followed by potatoes and aubergine slices. Stir everything together and cover the pan with a lid. Lower the heat and cook the vegetables for 5-7 minutes.
  • Remove the lid and add fresh coriander and yoghurt. Stir and mix well with the vegetables. Serve garnished with some extra fresh coriander leaves.

I tried this combo and it was a very hearty meal, which we enjoyed very much. Try this any Indian flatbread and enjoy........................

This combo meal is going to take part in following events :

 Combo Meal event, hosted by Chaitrali Of I-m-not-a chef

CWS : Nigella Seeds, hosted by Umm of Taste of Pearl City and started by Priya's Easy N tasty Recipes

Only' Low Oil, Low calorie event, hosted by Priya of Mharo rajasthan's Recipe and started by Pari of Foodelicious

Monday, September 27, 2010 / by / 5 Comments


  1. Dear Indrani
    Very nice recipes...Till now I used to think, Balti dish is one which is served in a cute small brass Balti LOL. In fact all the restaurants here serve the balti dish literally in balti ha ha.
    I shall try the Dal is great recipe
    Bhalo theko

  2. Thanks for sharing this traditional recipe with us....ekebare different type of daal...

  3. Both dishes sounds yummy, droolworthy dal, thanks for sharing both dishes..

  4. wow..that's a mouthwatering platter..both the dishes look yum!

    US Masala

  5. looks superb and yummy...thanx for sending


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